Posted by Devon Partnership Trust in News on 11th October, 2019
October 11th 2019 is National Coming Out Day in the UK; an annual celebration of coming out as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or any other sexual orientation or gender identity. Today we mark the 31st anniversary!
We observe National Coming Out Day as a way to celebrate and raise awareness that coming out STILL MATTERS. Coming out – telling people about your sexual orientation or gender identity takes bravery. Every person who speaks up changes more hearts and minds, and creates new advocates for equality.
Telling someone about your sexuality and/or gender identity should always be a personal decision and no one should ever feel pressured to come out. It’s important to remember that there is no right or wrong and to trust what feels right to you.
Wayne Dhesi, Stonewall’s Youth Programmes Manager and creator of RUComingOut, says: “When we talk about and share what coming out was like for us, we can offer much needed strength and support to those who may be struggling with similar fears and anxiety we once faced."
People can often forget that coming out is usually not just a one-off event. While you might already be open about your sexual orientation and/or gender identity to those close to you, you might not be out to everyone in your family or workplace or social circles. Only half of lesbian, gay, bi people (46 per cent) and trans people (47 per cent) feel able to be open about who they are to their whole family. While more than a third of LGBT staff (35 per cent) have hidden their identity at work. Concerns about personal safety and fears about discrimination can all play a part in someone’s decision to come out.
Here at Devon Partnership NHS Trust our Staff LGBTI+ Network is proudly implementing the NHS Rainbow Badge.
The Rainbow Badge is an extremely important demonstration of a commitment to LGBTI+ inclusion - and confirms staff will be an approachable and supportive individual for people that identify as LGBTI+.